Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Borrowed Landscapes: Megan Mitchell



The work in this exhibition was drawn from the CERAMIC TOP 40 | 2013  show held at Red Star Studios in Kansas City, Missouri in 2013, and includes new work from artists working on the cutting edge of contemporary ceramics who were featured in the show.

CERAMIC TOP 40 | New & Selected Works, an exhibit of contemporary ceramic art at Gallery 224, Ceramics Program, Office of the Arts at Harvard, features pieces selected from a broad survey of today’s leading ceramic artists. The exhibition was curated by Leslie Ferrin, director of Ferrin Contemporary.

The pieces are new and selected works from the artists featured in the Ceramic Top 40 | 2013 show, held at Red Star Studios, part of Bleger Crane Yard Studios in Kansas City, MO. The Harvard exhibition combines invited and juried submissions representing a range of conceptual, utilitarian, and sculptural ceramics and seeks to identify artists working on the cutting edge of current processes, ideas, and presentation concepts. Both up-and-coming and established artists who are breaking new ground are included.

MAY 27–AUGUST 16, 2014
Gallery 224, Ceramic Program, Office of the Arts at Harvard
224 Western Avenue, Allston, MA
JUNE 11, 2014
2–5:00 Workshop Demonstration by Lauren Mabry
5–6:00 Curator Lecture by Leslie Ferrin
6–8:00 Opening Reception
Link to Harvard Ceramics for directions and workshop details

Object: Spoon is open!

During a 2013 residency at Medalta in Medicine Hat, Canada, Australian based artist Vipoo Srivilasa was seeking a way to bring fellow artists together. His compulsion for connection with other makers necessitated a simple and effective mechanism, ingeniously Srivilasa chose to invite fellow residents to make a modest, universal object as a way of both getting to know each other and celebrating their shared passion and profession. The object? A spoon!

Inspired by the strong sense of collaboration and connection enabled by this common object Srivilasa quickly realised the potential of the idea and upon his return to Australia put out an open invitation through his extensive networks, asking makers to create spoons and to submit digital images. From 72 submissions (from 16 countries), 25 spoons were selected by Srivilasa, with advice from Vicki Grima, editor of The Journal of Australian Ceramics and Leslie Ferrin, curator of Ceramic Top 40.

The final collection, will be presented as a group in Object: Spoon in the second venue of Ceramic Top 40 | New & Selected Works at Harvard Ceramics in Allston, Massachusetts, USA.

Generated by his basic human need for friendship in a new community, Srivilasa has inspired an international engagement between established and international ceramicists from 16 countries in this collaboration OBJECT: SPOON.
This text appears in excerpted form. You can read the entire article in the OBJECT:SPOON story 
by Ramona Barry and Beck Jobson from Hand Made Life Blog 

25 spoons from these 2014 finalists will be on exhibit:
Tinne Maria Andersen, Marta Armada, Elaine Bolt, Jim Bov’e, Meredith Brickell, Joey Chiarello, Kris Coad, Rachel Cramer, Sally Curry, Trisha Dean, Carole Epp, Klaus Gutowski, Evan Hobart, Vanessa Holle, Nayoung Im, Sukumarl Leksawat, Steven Low and Thai Kwan, Miro Mackiewicz, Fiona McDonald, Creina Moore, Jo Quirk, Bonnie Smith, Leilani Trinka, Gerry Wedd, Snow Yu

Gerry Wedd

Ceramics Program, Office of the Arts at Harvard
Gallery 224, 224 Western Avenue, Allston, MA
Exhibition: May 27–August 16, 2014
Opening date: May 27, 2014
Exhibition hours: Mon-Fri  10.00 am - 16.00 pm min and by appointment
Other Events: June 11, 2014
2–5:00pm   Workshop Demonstration with artist Lauren Mabry
5–6:00pm   Curator Lecture with Leslie Ferrin
6–8:00pm   Opening Reception

movie day: Jugtown & Mark Hewitt Pottery

Saturday, 24 May 2014

Cousins in Clay - Next week!

call for entry: seres' 14 3rd International Ceramics and Glass Exhibition

emerging artist: Mónica Guerrero

Artist’s Statement
I believe every object, no matter its humble function, may also serve as art. So, while I enjoy creating something where the primary purpose is to provide beauty, I favor that which provides practical utility. I hope my pots and tableware are used daily.  

My pieces tend to depict a narrative. I use different techniques, each a form of drawing—sgraffito, carving, slip trailing and painting—that differ depending on the story or vignette I want to tell.  I use free hand, which allows for spontaneous detail or for me to change the original thought.

The ideas for my designs come from many sources —nature, my background as a Peruvian Latin American Art Historian, ethnic art from around the world, children’s book illustrations, animation and cartoons. These influences can be seen throughout my work in subtle or overt ways. I fixate on a number of details—I have a constant fight, for example, with my tendency to respond to horror vacui.

Friday, 23 May 2014

call for artists: upcoming opportunities at Genesee Pottery

History in the Making | October 2014

Open to all original work, functional or sculptural, traditional or contemporary, that incorporates historically-based design elements, themes, materials, or applications. (Historical can be defined as a significant trend or tradition 20 years or older.) Mixed media pieces should be predominantly ceramics.

Juror: Fred Herbst

Fred Herbst is a Professor of Art at Corning Community College in Corning, New York. (view his website here)
Applications due: August 10, 2014.

You may make submissions using the form on their website, or click here to download the prospectus.
Exhibition Proposals | 2014–2015
The Firehouse Gallery is currently accepting proposals for solo and group exhibitions for its 2014–2015 gallery calendar. All ceramic-based work will be considered, mixed-media work must be predominantly ceramic. Proposals are reviewed on a rolling basis.

To apply, please send the following:
A cd with 15-20 images of recent work. (300dpi jpeg)
Hardcopy of image descriptions including: size, materials, titles
Artist statement
Letter of intent

Mail to: The Firehouse Gallery at Genesee Pottery, 713 Monroe Ave, Rochester, NY 14607

Thursday, 22 May 2014

Summer of Ceramics @ Kootenay School of the Arts

Register by calling Kootenay Studio Arts at 1.877.552.2821

call for entry: Zanesville Prize for Contemporary Ceramics

Zanesville Prize for Contemporary Ceramics
Total Prizes: $30,000
Best of Show: $20,000
1st Place: $5,000
2nd Place: $3,000
3rd Place: $1,000
Honorable Mention: $500 (2)
Zanesville Ohio Ceramic Arts (ZOCA) in cooperation with the Muskingum County Community Foundation (MCCF), the Potters Council, and the Artist Colony of Zanesville (ART COZ), is seeking entries in functional, sculptural, and tile ceramics.

There are two ways you may submit entries to the Zanesville Prize:
1. You may submit your entries online.
2. You may download a PDF version of the Zanesville Prize Call for Entries that includes the Entry Form and use that to submit your entries by mail.
No slides, prints or entry submissions will be accepted by email.

Three jurors will jury the competition:
Sherman Hall (Editor of Ceramics Monthly) (Columbus)
Brad Schwieger (Professor of Art at Ohio University) (Athens)
Angelica Pozo (Ceramic Artist) (Cleveland)

Entrants: Open to all ceramic artists worldwide.
There will be up to 100 pieces chosen. The recommended size of work is a base of no more than 16’’ wide or deep and a height of not more than 31’’ tall. Works may be larger than the recommended size, but the artist must pay for return shipping if the larger piece does not sell. Shipping costs of international works to be returned to a destination other than an address in the United States must be paid by the artist.
No ceiling-suspended works will be accepted. Only very limited on-site assembly of multi-part works will be possible. Works must be made primarily of ceramic materials and be predominantly the work of the artist. The artwork must be no more than two years old on the date of entry.

     Opening date for submissions: January 15, 2014
     Deadline for receipt of entries: July 15, 2014
     Notification of acceptances: August 15, 2014
     Delivery of accepted works: September 15-22, 2014 (including hand delivery)
     Exhibition Dates: September 27 – October 12, 2014

A fee of $40 covers up to three (3) entries. You may submit your entries online. If you submit your entries by mail, checks or money orders are to be made out to MCCF and must be drawn on a US bank payable in US funds.

Artists of entries selected for the competition will be notified by e-mail, so be sure to include your e-mail address. If you wish to be notified by regular mail, please include a self-addressed stamped envelope.

Find all the details here:

job posting: Curator of Exhibitions

Red Lodge Clay Center is pleased to announce our search for a full time Curator of Exhibitions.

After four years, seventeen long-term residents, 125 exhibitions, 40 newsletters, and four NCECA Expos our Curator of Exhibitions Jill Foote-Hutton will be moving forward on her professional path to explore new opportunities and focus on the evolution of her own creative practice. Jill will continue to be involved with Red Lodge Clay Center through the DO GOOD Residency and while we are sad to see her leave, we know with every connection a friendship is made and our circle grows. We are now seeking a successor to assume this collaborative leadership role. 

The ideal candidate would have an extensive knowledge of contemporary ceramics, the ceramic medium, and previous gallery experience. Sales experience, excellent communication and interpersonal skills are necessary. Strong office administration, business skills, and computer database knowledge are essential. 
The Curator of Exhibitions will curate and install gallery exhibitions; maintain gallery website; produce the Center’s monthly newsletter; facilitate public relations and advertising; monitor inventory and sales through Center’s point of sale software. Additional responsibilities include managing resident assistants working in the gallery performing such duties as receiving and processing inventory, gallery sales, packing and shipping inventory, and assisting in exhibition transitions.

The Curator of Exhibitions will work closely with Executive Director and Staff to develop programs to enhance the Center's educational mission. 

Starting annual salary commensurate with experience. 

Application packet should include cover letter, resume, and contact information of three references. Please send all materials to: David Hiltner, Executive Director, Red Lodge Clay Center, PO Box 1527, Red Lodge, Montana 59068. Review of applications will be ongoing until the position is filled.

podcast thursdays: The Moth- Charlene Strong- It Wasn’t Enough

The Moth- Charlene Strong- It Wasn’t Enough

The Moth showcases riveting first person stories told in front of a live audience by America’s best storytellers. In this episode Charlene Strong tells a story of love and loss. Visit to watch a video of the performance or find the podcast on iTunes.

“Charlene Strong is a Human Rights Commissioner and advocate for equality. Her story and fight for family rights were critical in helping to pass landmark domestic partnership legislation in Washington state. Charlene is the subject of the award winning documentary, For My Wife…, chronicling the making of an activist.”

Visit the blog to listen to the Tales of a Red Clay Rambler Podcast. Discussion about clay, culture, and travel at

Friday, 16 May 2014

Supreme Court unanimously decides in favour of artists

via Carfac

"Wednesday, May 14, 2014 – Visual artists had a big victory today at the Supreme Court in the fight for minimum artist fees at the National Gallery of Canada. In a unanimous decision from the bench, the court allowed an appeal on behalf of artist restoring an earlier decision that found in their favour.
At issue was a perceived conflict between the Status of the Artist Act and the Copyright Act. The associations that represent artists, CARFAC and RAAV, had been trying to negotiate binding minimum fees for the payment of artists at the gallery, similar to a minimum wage. The gallery essentially argued CARFAC and RAAV, were taking away the right of artists to be paid less if they chose. In allowing the appeal, the court rejected this argument and, in an unusual move, ruled immediately after oral arguments.

Artists from across Canada in attendance were delighted with the results. “It’s a good day for artists,” said Grant McConnell, president of CARFAC. “This is a major victory for all artists in Canada and Quebec.”

“We are looking forward to resuming negotiations as we always wanted to do since 2003,” said Karl Beveridge, co-chair of the negotiation committee.

We would like to say a special thank you to everyone who has donated to support this legal effort. You made this victory possible!

We would also like to thank our lawyers, David Yazbeck, Michael Fisher and Wassim Garzouzi."

Call for entry: Woodfire Photographic Competition in Conjunction with the 2nd European Woodfire Conference

Category 1. The View from the Kiln Shed (to include all or part of the kiln)
Category 2. The Kiln
Category 3. Firing
Entry to the competition is confined to delegates attending the 2nd European Woodfire Conference
Images to be e-mailed to:
Closing date: 15th August 2014
There will be an initial short listing of ten images in each category by an experienced panel of judges
These images will be printed and exhibited at the conference
Prizes will be awarded in each category based on voting by delegates
A selection of winning images will be published in a future issue of The Log Book
Images must be of a quality suitable for printing. Format: JPG, approx. 3000 x 2000 pixels, with a file size of approx 3Mb
Everyone attending the conference is encouraged to submit entries for this competition.

Sponsored by:The Log Book

Fusion Conference 2014

call for artist: Fusion Mentorships

Monday, 12 May 2014

Potters' Retreat with Matt Long, Kristen Kieffer and Adam Field @ Mary Anderson Center for the Arts

My name is Steven Cheek and I am the current Director of the Mary Anderson Center for the Arts located on the grounds of Mt. St. Francis, IN. We are just across the river from Louisville, KY and a short 25 minute drive from the Louisville airport on 450 acres of beautiful woods, fields and a lake.
The Mary Anderson Center for the Arts is holding our first Potters' Retreat this summer, June 11-14, with Adam Field, Kristen Kieffer and Matt Long as our inaugural presenters. This three day demonstration based workshop will showcase three highly regarded ceramic artists. To see more information on this event, check out our new website.

I am very excited about this workshop and I would love to have a great turnout. I have created a facebook event for this and I am in the process of the final big push for this event. I have extended the early registration out to May 15. If you have any questions feel free to contact me.

Steven G Cheek
Director/Artist in Residence
Mary Anderson Center for the Arts

monday morning eye candy: Jess Riva Cooper

Sunday, 11 May 2014

job posting @ the North Caroline Pottery Center

Educational Program Manager & Project Coordinator

The North Carolina Pottery Center, located in Seagrove, NC, is seeking an energetic and enthusiastic individual to fill the two-part position of Educational Program Manager & Project Coordinator.
Reporting to the Executive Director, this is a full-time position. The normal work schedule will be Tuesday-Friday from 8:00-5:00 and Saturday from 10:00-4:00. Given the nature of educational programming and project coordination, some evening work should be expected. The schedule will allow for flexibility based on comp time and other considerations.

About the North Carolina Pottery Center
The mission of the center is to promote public awareness and appreciation of the history, heritage, and ongoing tradition of pottery making in North Carolina through educational programs, public services, collection and preservation, and research and documentation.
The North Carolina Pottery Center showcases the remarkable history and on-going tradition of pottery making in North Carolina. Located in Seagrove, one of the state's key historical and contemporary pottery producing regions, the Center is your first stop in exploring North Carolina's rich clay heritage. The state's pottery communities range from the mountains to the sea, and it is that wide-ranging diversity of styles, techniques, and history that the Center preserves and protects. Our permanent exhibit of more than eight hundred pieces of pottery, artifacts, and photographs traces North Carolina's pottery history from prehistoric Native Americans to the present. The display interprets the impact of social, technological, and economic change on the state's most unique cultural resource. Changing exhibitions of historical and contemporary work are also on display.

Position Responsibilities:
Educational Program Manager
  • Work with the Exhibitions Committee Chair and guest curators on upcoming exhibitions regarding possible educational programming associated with those exhibitions and facilitate said educational programming. The center has 3 large temporary exhibitions a year in addition to its permanent exhibits.
  • Coordinate and administer the annual Traditional Arts Program in Schools (TAPS) program.
  • Devise and implement additional educational programming and outreach activities for a range of audiences – children, young adults, adults, seniors, people with disabilities, etc.
  • Help devise and implement multi-media and interactive educational programming.
  • Work with, and co-supervise (along with the Director), periodic interns from ECU, with whom the center has a collaboration.
  • Work with the center’s Artist-in-Residence on educational programming, as well as other things.
  • Conduct guided tours.
Project Coordinator
  • Work with the Exhibitions Committee Chair and guest curators on upcoming exhibitions. (Post Card Design & Mailing, Exhibition Catalog Design, Banners, Loan Paperwork, Labels, Layout, Etc.) Attend and work exhibition opening receptions. The center has 3 large temporary exhibitions a year in addition to its permanent exhibits.
  • Work with the Annual Auction Committee on the planning of the Annual Auction. Coordinate and assist with all preparations for, and the implementation of, the Annual Auction.
  • Help coordinate and facilitate other special projects as they arise.
  • Maintain the Membership/Donor/Potter Database. Process membership and donation information/payments, generate letters and reports.
  • Send out mass emails to various distribution lists on an as needed basis.
As the center has a small staff, this position also helps out with the Front Desk/Gift Shop and Gift Shop inventory maintenance as needed. Other duties as planned with supervisor.

Important Note:
As the Educational Program Manager portion of this position will be funded by a two-year grant from the Windgate Charitable Foundation, it is vitally important that the person who fills this position be motivated to do an outstanding job and help justify future funding from either the Windgate Charitable Foundation or another granting source.

BA in Arts Education, Public History, or Museum Studies, MA preferred.
BFA/MFA also likewise acceptable. Equivalent life experience will also be considered.
Required:  A high degree of proficiency with Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Publisher. Experience leading a variety of educational programming activities and coordinating sizeable projects. Additionally, given the small staff, it is important that the individual filling this position be very dependable and reliable.
Bonuses:  Familiarity with pottery, pottery production, NC pottery, and/or NC potters. Turning ability. Familiarity with membership/database management. Proficiency with InDesign, Photoshop, and/or other graphic software. Photography skills. Familiarity with CMS/website maintenance.

Salary & Benefits:
Salary: $30,000. The center does not offer health or life insurance at this time, but is offering a $1,800 per year stipend towards health/life insurance. Per the IRS, for tax purposes, the stipend is considered taxable income.
The center offers eleven paid holidays and 10+ days vacation per year, as well as eight hours sick leave per month.
Please email cover letter, resume, and list of five references to by 5:00 pm Friday, May 30, 2014.

Saturday, 10 May 2014

emerging artist: Travis Winters

"Domestication is the practice of taming animals to live within close association with humans; it has been occurring since early civilizations. Throughout the centuries, humans have grown dependent upon these animals for food, clothing, transportation, work, and companionship. With these close interactions, intricate relationships have been formed and have shaped the way animals are perceived and treated. There are many societies around the world that revere certain species of animals and hold them sacred within their cultural or religious beliefs. Other cultures view animals as icons or symbols, meaningful to their society.  With most animals, humans have fixed perceptions that have been formed by common imagery.  These images appear within media in the form of cartoons, television, books, and stories. Much of the media that surrounds these creatures generates assumptions that certain animals are cute and cuddly, gross and disgusting, or even vicious and mean. With these impressions comes either a sense of attraction, repulsion, or even trepidation towards certain species."

"I investigate in my work these preconceived notions that surround certain animal species, while evoking the viewer’s sense of touch. The tactile quality of clay allows me to sculpt my figures to appear soft and fleshy, although they are very hard and dense. By stimulating one’s sense of touch, I invite the viewer to investigate the animal closer, regardless of their sensitivity towards that species. This invitation can either persuade one to view the animal as adorable and lovable, or grotesque and repulsive. Portraying my work in this manner, I generate a response in the viewer to either want to fondle and pet, or recoil in disgust. By provoking one’s sense of touch I am able manipulate the preconceived perceptions that surround certain animals. I mimic the feeling of softness and fleshiness to the viewer, by modeling my animals with exaggerated folds and wrinkles, thus creating a visceral experience with my work." - Travis Winters

Thursday, 8 May 2014

podcast thursdays: Radio Lab - Sleep

I'm almost ridiculous excited to introduce a new repeating feature to musing. I'm sure you all know of Ben Carter and his podcast Tales of a Red Clay Rambler. It is one the best arts and culture podcasts out there and as a bonus it is focused on ceramics. I'm sure for many of us it is the soundtrack to our studios. With podcasts such as Ben's and Brian Jones (, and a new up and coming podcast - The Potters Cast by Paul Blais (, there are hours of inspiring stories to go through. But what if (dare I say it?) we want to listen to some other podcasts that are equally as interesting but maybe not about clay? Well I've enlisted Ben's help to start compiling a listening list for you of some of his favorite episodes from other podcasts. I hope you'll join me in welcoming Ben to musing about mud as a regular bi-weekly feature. Ben's extensive knowledge and experience will surely make this new feature one to look forward to. 

Thanks Ben!

Radio Lab- Sleep- Episode 2 of Season 3

Radio Lab’s unique brand of story telling is candy for my brain. It was one of the first podcasts that I became addicted to and after only a few episodes I set upon a quest to listen to every episode. One of my favorite early episodes, Sleep, looks at what happens to humans, and all the world’s creatures, when they fall asleep. Visit to download the episode or find the podcast on iTunes.

“Radiolab is a show about curiosity. Where sound illuminates ideas, and the boundaries blur between science, philosophy, and human experience.”